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Training Tomorrow’s Energy Engineers



John Smegal

9/2/2014

The Energy Department’s Industrial Assessment Centers (IAC) program is a workforce development initiative aimed at creating the next generation of energy engineers. IAC graduates possess a unique mixture of engineering and energy management expertise, combined with hands-on experience obtained by working directly with small- and medium-size manufacturing facilities across the country. The federal government has been supporting the IAC program—formerly known as the Energy Analysis and Diagnostic Centers—since 1976. Although initially housed within the US Department of Commerce, the program was transferred to the US Department of Energy in 1980. Full Article

Batteries Up!



Steve Bryan

8/6/2014

While still not quite ready for the major leagues, using batteries for grid storage is establishing a solid base. Full Article

Rays of Hope, Clouds of Doubt



Bruce Morey

8/6/2014

The nuclear power industry shows signs of recovery, but risks of many kinds are scattered across the path to the future. Full Article

Shop Solutions: Safe, Productive Fume Extraction Technology



Edited by Senior Editor Jim Lorincz

7/1/2014

Vermeer Corp., a family-owned and operated company was founded in Pella, IA, in 1948. Vermeer provides agricultural and industrial equipment to customers in more than 60 nations for industries including biomass, landscaping, pipeline, surface mining, tree care, and utility installation. For Vermeer, building a quality product for customers starts with a foundation of well-trained, skilled employees who are valued as its most important resource. Full Article

Keeping Energy Production in High Gear



Joel Neidig, Technology Manager, ITAMCO

6/16/2014

Worldwide demand for energy is growing. Fortunately, so too is the technology for producing energy. This is where the gear—that humble mechanical cogwheel that quietly goes about its job of rotating and delivering torque to various pieces of machinery—has an important role to play. Full Article

BIG M 2014: Why Manufacturers Ought to be Institutionalized



Michael C. Anderson Senior Editor

6/12/2014

National Network of Manufacturing Institutes leaders answer questions at The Big M event Full Article

Transforming Necessity into Opportunity



Edited by Yearbook Editor James D. Sawyer from information supplied by CNC Software

6/5/2014

Until the mid-’90s Precision Fluorocarbon Inc. (PFI; Tomball,TX) was a nonmetallic machining business primarily serving the energy marketplace—the oil & gas industry in particular. After a severe downturn hit the oil business, the company was faced with the problem/opportunity of translating its unique competencies into other fields.  Full Article

Making the Most of the Wind



Edited by Executive Editor James D. Sawyer

6/4/2014

How much electricity can a turbine construction more than 328' (110-m) tall generate? How can you ensure the assembly of any wind turbine runs smoothly when there is only one chance to put it together? Vestas Nacelles (Lem, Denmark) answers those questions with a strict quality policy enabled by high-capacity portable measuring systems. Full Article

Future is Bright for US Energy Production



James Crompton, Industry Research Analyst, IBISWorld

6/4/2014

The US is one of the world’s largest producers and consumers of energy, and this trend is expected to continue over the five years, to 2019. Improving technologies and techniques have enabled both oil & gas extractors and mining companies of all types to improve their operational efficiencies; consequently, manufacturers of machinery and equipment for these sectors have increasingly been experiencing strong demand for their products. Full Article

Quality Scan: Track Your Pipes—From the Cradle to the Grave



Ivan Winkler, CWI, Senior Manager, Field Operations North America, TUV Rheinland Industrial Solutions

6/1/2014

Across the US, miles of piping are being placed and replaced due to new fracking projects. If structural integrity of pipes is compromised during manufacture, storage, delivery or installation, it may result in coating damage, which in turn will lead to pipe corrosion, causing gas leaks. This can increase project costs down the road and even endanger safety and health of personnel, the public and environment. Full Article

Heller Looks To Pump Up the Energy



Executive Editor James D. Sawyer

5/30/2014

Motorized vehicles were frequently mentioned during Heller WerkTage (literally Working Days) 2014 held at company headquarters in Nürtingen, Germany. That’s not surprising for a number of reasons. For one Nürtingen is not far from Stuttgart, where Karl Benz invented what is considered to be the first automobile. Benz was granted a patent for his invention in 1886. Eight years later the company now known as Gebr. Heller Maschinenfabrik GmbH was founded in Nürtingen.In the intervening 120 years both companies have grown and most often prospered. That’s illustrated by a little-known fact: since 2004 about 80% of the machining for heavy truck engines has been done on Heller machines.
Full Article

PSI Repair Services to Showcase at AWEA WINDPOWER 2014



PSI Repair Services, Inc.

4/23/2014

PSI Repair Services, Inc., a subsidiary of Phillips Service Industries and leading independent service provider (ISP) to the wind energy industry, will showcase its extensive product upgrade capabilities to wind farm operations and maintenance (O&M) professionals at the AWEA WINDPOWER 2014 Conference & Exhibition.This flexible, cost-effective engineering service involves enhancing legacy components with newer, more reliable technology to improve performance and extend the component’s life. Full Article

Tech Front - New Carbon Nanotubes Outperform Copper as Electrical Conductors



Patrick Waurzyniak, Senior Editor and Ellen Kehoe, Senior Editor

4/1/2014

Carbon nanotube-based fibers created at Rice University (Houston) show that on a pound-per-pound basis, the nanotube fibers have more capacity to conduct electrical current than copper. Although individual nanotubes can transmit nearly 1000 times more current than copper, the same tubes coalesced into a fiber using other technologies fail long before reaching that capacity. Full Article

Technology Goes Deep on Land and Subsea



Senior Editor Jim Lorincz

2/1/2014

You would have to go 5000–6000' (1524–1829 m) under water to see the AZ-10 fully concentric vertical mono-bore subsea tree operating in its natural working habitat. The AZ-10 subsea tree manufactured by Argus Subsea (Houston) is off-the-shelf hardware that can operate effectively anywhere a rig can power a blowout preventer (BOP). Full Article

UpFront: Energy Revolution Here to Stay



Editor in Chief Sarah A. Webster

2/1/2014

As a nation, we’ve already crossed the threshold and entered a new era of energy production. Consider: the US Energy Information Administration estimates that the US will be the world’s top producer of petroleum and natural gas hydrocarbons in 2013, surpassing Russia and Saudi Arabia.  Full Article

A Network of Little Silicon Valleys



Editor in Chief Sarah A. Webster

1/31/2014

One of the biggest moments of the 2014 State of the Union was President Barack Obama’s announcement of six new manufacturing hubs, or innovation institutes. Two are already in the works, including “America Makes,” the additive manufacturing hub, in Youngstown, OH, and the recently announced wide bandgap semiconductor hub in Raleigh, NC. Together, these institutes, Obama said in his address to Congress, give us "the chance, right now, to beat other countries in the race for the next wave of high-tech manufacturing jobs.”

Full Article

ABB Wins Zayed Future Energy Prize 2014



ABB

1/24/2014

ABB, the global power and automation technology group, has been awarded the Zayed Future Energy Prize 2014 in recognition of its efforts to drive innovation, renewable energy and energy efficiency. "It is a great honor to have won the Zayed Future Energy Prize 2014,” said ABB Chief Executive Officer, Ulrich Spiesshofer. Full Article

Fighting for the American Dream



Jim McKay, Editor, USW@Work, United Steelworkers Communications Dept.

1/10/2014

Elliott Group, a 103-year-old maker of advanced centrifugal compressors and steam turbines, is expanding its United Steelworkers (USW) workforce and investing $110 million into a US factory that was once a candidate for closure. That’s the result of a remarkable turnaround in labor-management relations at Elliott’s main US manufacturing plant that was sparked by a local union that did not want to die. Full Article

Big Investments in Oil & Gas



Manufacturing Engineering Media Staff

1/10/2014

The oil and gas industry is set for another year of record investment. According to recent analysis and report from IHS Global Inc. (Washington, D.C.), the recent surge in oil and gas transportation and storage infrastructure is not a short-lived phenomenon. Full Article

In this ‘Oil Patch’ They Speak with a Burr and Not a Drawl



Edited by Senior Editor James D. Sawyer from information provided by Hurco Companies Inc.

12/18/2013

Scotland has a robust contract manufacturing community that serves the oil & gas industry in the North Sea—and beyond. Full Article

Tooling Up for Fluid-End Machining



Don Halas, Threading and Grooving Product Manager, and Scott Turner, Drilling Product Manager, Seco Tools

12/18/2013

  Demand for fluid ends is rising because of increased drilling and the component’s short lifespan.    Full Article

Coupling Growth with Productivity



Edited by Yearbook Editor James D. Sawyer from material provided by Okuma America Corp.

12/18/2013

Automation helps provide LB Pipe with a competitive edge as well as a broader customer portfolio. Full Article

Making Light Work of Heavy-Duty Machining



Oliver Hagenlocher, Director of Marketing, EMAG Sales and Services GMBH

12/6/2013

The larger the component, the smaller the batch size—this is the way one could describe the demands made on heavy-duty machining in many branches of manufacturing. In fact, this simple equation provides as much of a challenge to wind turbine engineering and the production of large commercial vehicles as it does to, for instance, the railway construction industry. Full Article

Automation Beats Handmade Hands Down



Tony Tharp, Business Development Manager, Sunnen Products Co.

12/6/2013

The shale gas boom in the US is creating its own boom for producers of metering equipment. Meter tubes, also called “meter runs,” are critical parts of the orifice gas meter, a device that’s been used for more than a century to measure gas flows. Millions of meter tubes are used worldwide, usually at custody transfer points to determine billing amounts. Full Article

Rocking the Hard Metal



Dale Petts, Global Product Manager of Metal Products, Simonds International

12/6/2013

Due to rising fuel costs, there is a strong trend to manufacture turbines and engines with higher fuel efficiency to meet today’s energy challenges. One approach manufacturers are taking is to design these units to operate at a hotter temperature. Full Article

Clean and Green Goes Beyond Just Cars and Trucks



David Tulauskas, Director of Sustainability, General Motors Co.

11/27/2013

Efforts to decrease dependence on petroleum and reduce carbon emissions extend beyond General Motors vehicles to our global manufacturing footprint. We are an industrial leader in ongoing energy and emissions reductions. Sound energy management policies help define manufacturing excellence, represent effective cost savings and offer obvious environmental benefits. Full Article

Focus on the Workforce: Training Tomorrow's Energy Engineers



John Smegal, Workforce Development Lead, Advanced Manufacturing Office, US Department of Energy

11/22/2013

The Energy Department’s Industrial Assessment Centers (IAC) program is a workforce development initiative aimed at creating the next generation of energy engineers. IAC graduates possess a unique mixture of engineering and energy management expertise, combined with hands-on experience obtained by working directly with small- and medium-size manufacturing facilities across the country. Full Article

New Challenge for Automation



ABB Group.

11/11/2013

Concentrating solar power (CSP) plants represent a new challenge for automation. The ratio of about 400 I/O signals per MW is one of the highest in power generation. The system tags also have an extremely high ratio of about 3500 tags per MW. Full Article

A Fresh Twist on Making Turbine Models



Edited by Yearbook Editor James D. Sawyer from information provided by Siemens Industry Inc.

11/11/2013

MCE Maschinen und Apparatebau GmbH (MCE; Linz, Austria) produces various components for large gas, steam, and water turbines, as well as for wind power stations and other segments of energy production. Full Article

A Double Infusion of Extra Energy



David Yang, Industry Analyst, IBISWorld

11/1/2013

Cheaper fuel will provide a boom in—and prove a boon to—US manufacturing. Full Article

JCI Looks to Batteries and Seats to Help Promote Fuel Savings



James D. Sawyer Senior Editor

10/18/2013

There were many areas Johnson Controls Inc. (JCI; Milwaukee) focused on during its Automotive Day October 15 at its facility in Plymouth, MI, but the two that stood out most can be summed up as electric and chairs. A large diversified company (workforce: 168,000) with a footprint in more than 150 countries, JCI supplies two-thirds of the lead-acid batteries consumed by automakers and the aftermarket. Also, it was the first company to produce lithium-ion batteries for mass production hybrid vehicles. Full Article

Keeping Your Bearings Straight



Edited by Senior Editor James D. Sawyer from information provided by Renishaw Inc.

10/14/2013

Blade pitch adjustment is one of the most critical functions of wind turbine operation, and the giant bearings in the adjustment mechanism can now be manufactured with accuracy typically reserved for small parts, using a new KMT Lidköping vertical turn-grind machine from KMT Precision Grinding (Lidköping, Sweden; Milford, MA). Full Article

GE Oil & Gas Launches New Subsea Manifold Line



GE Oil & Gas

9/16/2013

Expanded product line, standardized design meantto help reduce delivery time to customers by up to 50%. Full Article

US Oil and Gas Revolution Boosts Economy, Job Growth



IHS Inc.

9/5/2013

More than 3.3 million jobs will be supported in 2020 as the unconventional oil and gas revolution boosts industry competitiveness and manufacturing growth. Full Article

You Can Get There from Here



Edited by Senior Editor James D. Sawyer

8/5/2013

Highly specialized contract manufacturer leverages CAM to resolve energy product development issues. Full Article

Tool Time for Fracking



Matt Tegelman, Applications & Product Manager, BIG Kaiser Precision Tooling Inc.

8/5/2013

Helical interpolation and rough boring are two ways to open holes in fracking-industry applications, but as volume increases and speed becomes a factor, one operation emerges as superior. Full Article

In Search of Better Wind Turbines



Karun Chakravarthy, Solution Experience--Energy, Process & Utilities, Dassault Systèmes

8/5/2013

Product development project management of wind energy generators is a complex process that can benefit from a single collaborative approach.   Full Article

It Takes Perseverance and the Right Technology in the Oil Patch



Edited by Senior Editor James D. Sawyer

8/5/2013

Starting out small--really small--and then growing rapidly involves risk, courage, perseverance and the right machining technology.  Meet a Texan who's traveled that path. Full Article

Can Lean Help Grease the Way in Oil & Gas?



Contributing Editor Bruce Morey

7/30/2013

Lean manufacturing is generally seen as being best suited to the automotive and similar industries. Full Article

Progress in Manufacturing Sustainability



Senior Editor Ellen Kehoe

7/29/2013

Sustainable manufacturing approaches, standards initiatives and industry solutions were highlighted at a panel session June 13 at the NAMRC-MSEC advanced manufacturing conference, an annual event of the North American Manufacturing Research Institution of SME and the Manufacturing Engineering Division of ASME. Full Article

Hurricane Sandy and Our Energy Infrastructure



David Sandalow, Under Secretary of Energy (Acting) and Assistant Secretary for Policy & International Affairs Department of Energy

7/10/2013

On the night of October 29, 2012, Hurricane Sandy slammed into the East Coast of the US. The storm first made landfall just south of Atlantic City, NJ, with 80-mph (130-km/h) winds, torrential rains and record storm surges. Full Article

America's Unconventional Revolution, Energy Security and Innovation



Daniel Yergin, Vice Chairman, IHS

7/10/2013

The United States is in the midst of an  unconventional revolution in oil and gas that, it becomes increasingly apparent, goes beyond energy itself. Today, the industry supports 1.7 million jobs—a considerable accomplishment given the relative newness of some of its technology. Full Article

Drill, Baby, Drill



Edited by Senior Editor James D. Sawyer

7/10/2013

An oil & gas subcontractor found a solution that delivered the whole package: Greater throughput, a better finish and less outsourcing.  Full Article

Li-ion Batteries Move a Step Closer to Perfection



Brian Dunt, Applications Engineer, Promess Inc.

7/10/2013

Lithium ion (li-ion) batteries are the technology of choice for applications ranging from handheld electronics to “plug-and-drive” vehicles and back-up power systems for server farms and other critical systems. Full Article

Emerson Process Management Opens New Manufacturing Site, HQ in Houston



Edited by Contributing Editor Bruce Morey

6/10/2013

Plant for valves and other oil and gas equipment will employ 250 by 2016. Full Article

Shale is Good News For Ohio's Mahoning Valley



Edited by Contributing Editor Bruce Morey

6/10/2013

The Marcellus and Utica shale deposits are sparking not only an oil and gas boom but a revival of manufacturing in Rust Belt communities.   Full Article

Oil Patch Prospects to Rise



Senior Editor Patrick Waurzyniak

6/10/2013

While the oil patch experiences an ebb in its boom-and-bust cycle, projections for increased oil sands and conventional oil production point to improving conditions for the Canadian market. Full Article

Danos to Build New Facilities in Louisiana



Edited by Contributing Editor Bruce Morey

6/10/2013

A headquarters facility in Gray, LA, will contain the bulk of the 426 new jobs expected to be generated by the company’s move. A manufacturing site will account for the rest. Full Article

Shell Lays Keel for World's First Floating LNG Project



Edited by Contributing Editor Bruce Morey

6/10/2013

What Shell calls the Prelude could be largest offshore floating facility ever built, displacing six times as much as the largest aircraft carrier. Full Article

The Path to More Efficient Motors for Manufacturing



Rich Schaefer, Senior Product Manager, Baldor Electric Co.

6/7/2013

The AC induction motor has been the workhorse of the industrial revolution. What will the motor of the future look like? To understand where we are going, let’s take a look at where we have been and where we are now. Full Article



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